Thursday, June 21, 2007

Jumping into bed with Gordo.........why not?

Well, how about that - Lib Dems headlining the news two days running, can't be bad! I have read with interest fellow bloggers' perspectives on this (see Stephen Tall, Nich Starling, Paul Walter et al) so I thought I would put my tenpenneth in. Give him his due, that Gordon Brown is a shrewd operator.......a clever wheeze, tie the hands of the only party with the integrity to really hold you to account and, done and dusted, a clear road through for all your unnecessary unwanted "reforms" of everything that moves - and mark my words that is what we are in for. Its a bit like the chairing technique of sitting your potentially most difficult participant next to you - much easier to control.

Now, the question for me, as well as why not, is why? Why did Gordo think he may get anywhere with Ming? What other conversations had taken place previously? Or was it that he knew what the answer would be.........hmmmm, have to wait for one or other's diaries I guess.

So to answer the why not a climate where we are being accused of being " the awkward position of shying away from power in order to preserve a virtuous but uninfluential independence" it would be easy to think we are throwing up a golden opportunity. And on this issue I identify with the dilemma such an offer put our party in. A few years ago our directly elected mayor went behind the back of my party leader to offer me a portfolio in his cabinet. He even offered to create a special responsibility - Youth. I agonised about it, the area I cared most about, had the most expertise on and believed I could really have an impact on changing things for the young people of Bedford. party had rightly made it clear I would be thrown out if I accepted. I turned it down, for one simple reason. I joined the party because I believe in collective action and collective responsibility. If my party had accepted any seat on his cabinet they would have had to be bound to his policy agenda and his budget. I joined this party because I believed it accorded most closely with my values - as I frequently say to those on the doorstep who dare to suggest "you are all the same" - if I believed that why on earth would I join the Lib Dems???!

So - to answer my why not....................................because we are democrats, because we believe people deserve a choice (and at the moment that choice is between us and the other two Tory parties), because to do so would turn us into the worst kind of opportunist flim-flammers and because, at the moment the people have chosen a Labour government, not a Lib-Lab coalition.

1 comment:

Laurence Boyce said...

Ming Campbell in bed with Gordon Brown? I feel quite ill.